Paddy Jackson will start for Ireland against France after passing fitness test

Last Updated: 09/03/13 4:40pm

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Paddy Jackson: Fit to face France on Saturday

Paddy Jackson: Fit to face France on Saturday

Sky Bet

Paddy Jackson will start at fly-half for Ireland in their Six Nations match against France on Saturday.

Ireland coach Declan Kidney did not name a fly-half in the side announced on Tuesday to allow Jackson to undergo a fitness test on a minor hamstring strain he picked up in training.

The 21-year-old Ulster player passed his test and will start at number 10. The uncapped Ian Madigan will provide cover on the bench.

Munster prop Stephen Archer will fill the third vacancy left in the team after being selected among the replacements.

"Paddy kicked in the Aviva Stadium yesterday and kicked well and trained fully this morning," said Kearney.

"Paddy's hamstring first tightened up after Monday's session so there was a bit of concern about him.

"He sat out the session on Tuesday, received treatment and did some light running in the afternoon.

"He then came through kicking at the Aviva Stadium yesterday afternoon very well, so that clarified things for us, but up until then there was some small doubt.

"There was no discomfort this morning so he'll be fine."

The confirmed changes made by Kidney see Mike McCarthy come into the second row in place of Donncha O'Callaghan, loosehead Cian Healy - suspended for the defeat at Murrayfield - replace Tom Court, and Fergus McFadden comes in for the injured wing Craig Gilroy.

Ireland are currently fourth in the Six Nations table after defeat to Scotland in their previous fixture left them with two points from three games.

Ireland: 15 R Kearney, 14 F McFadden, 13 B O'Driscoll, 12 L Marshall, 11 K Earls, 10 P Jackson/ I Madigan, 9 C Murray; 1 C Healy, 2 R Best, 3 M Ross, 4 M McCarthy, 5 D Ryan, 6 P O'Mahony, 7 S O'Brien, 8 J Heaslip (c).

Replacements: 16 S Cronin, 17 D Kilcoyne, 18 TBC, 19 D O'Callaghan, 20 I Henderson, 21 E Reddan, 22 TBC, 23 L Fitzgerald.

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